Laura Marling Croons About Fraught Female Relationships

Her new album “Semper Femina” has as much drama as a great soap opera, but without the dopey clichés.


Laura Marling
Semper Femina
More Alarming

Courtesy of Grandstand Media & Management

Viewed from a distance, the British-born Laura Marling has always played the same familiar role—a woman with a strong voice and acoustic guitar offering pretty songs about love—yet a closer look reveals that predictability to be an illusion. Her previous two albums cast a harsh eye on romance, often preferring untouchable solitude to contact, and the intriguing Semper Femina finds her shifting gears again. Seeking connection, Marling chronicles fraught female relationships marked by need, affection, flawed communication and, above all, burning intensity. While these thoughtful tunes would have worked fine as solo performances, Marling and producer Blake Mills have varied the mix with all manner of effective sonic touches, including the gorgeous strings of “The Valley” and a hazy down-home vibe on “Wild Fire.” Passing the Bechdel test with ease, Semper Femina has as much drama as a great soap opera, but without the dopey clichés.

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate